Organized Sports Stanley Cup Playoff Predictions: First Round Recap, Second Round Predictions

In Canada, you can say this and be absolved of murder charges.

In Canada, you can say this and be absolved of murder charges.

Organized Sports is a recurring sports column named for a seminal DC avant-hardcore song by the equally stupid and brilliant (to me, “equally stupid and brilliant” pretty much just means “brilliant”) band Void. Take from that what you will. 

As soon as the first round ends, the second has already begun. I made some predictions, some right and some wrong. Let’s review and hit the new, after the jump.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Organized Sports: Anne B. Ape Layoff Predictions – The First Round

Not in Milwaukee.

Not in Milwaukee.

Organized Sports is a recurring sports column named for a seminal DC avant-hardcore song by the equally stupid and brilliant (to me, “equally stupid and brilliant” pretty much just means “brilliant”) band Void. Take from that what you will.

To a number of teams in the NBA, the regular season this year was even more meaningless than it is normally. The Miami Heat coasted to a second seed in the piss-poor Eastern Conference, keeping Dwyane Wade rested up for the games that really matter, and allowing Lebron to coast through the first half of the season and still remain the best player in the league—though his coasting likely cost him another MVP. The Indiana Pacers, dominant throughout the season in the East, pooped to a halt in the season’s final month, but still have the number one seed because the Heat didn’t care to take it from them. And then there are the rest of the teams in the East, who jockeyed for least-mediocre and the chance to lose to the Heat and Pacers on their way to the Conference Finals.

Out west, it was different. The regular season mattered because there were actually more good teams than could fit into the playoffs. The Phoenix Suns made a huge comeback after last year and still fell short of the postseason—Jeff Hornacek may wind up coach of the year anyway. The Spurs were dominant as usual, even after last year’s heartbreaking Finals loss. And the Thunder coasted to the second seed even while missing Russell Westbrook for most of the year, because Kevin Durant cannot be stopped.

Now, the real games begin, though. Come with me after the jump as I make some predictions on how this first round will go. Shall we? Continue reading

Organized Sports: Stanley Cup Layoffs – Round One

Someone had already thought of my joke.

Someone had already thought of my joke.

Organized Sports is a recurring sports column named for a seminal DC avant-hardcore song by the equally stupid and brilliant (to me, “equally stupid and brilliant” pretty much just means “brilliant”) band Void. Take from that what you will.

Organized Sports makes its long-awaited, triumphant return with everything you need to know about who will (possibly, maybe, probably not?) be victorious in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the best postseason in sports. Said playoffs begin tonight in earnest (well, they actually begin in the hockey hotbed of Tampa, Florida, but who’s counting?), so here are the Fully Reconditioned predictions.

This year is the debut of a new format, with divisional playoffs before the conference finals, with the top three teams in each division, and then two “Wild Card” teams making the playoffs rather than the top eight from each conference. It’s a slight return to the way things used to be, but with a modern twist, which also results in one of the divisions being named the Metropolitan Division. Said division contains such gleaming metropolises as Columbus and wherever the fuck the New York Islanders, Carolina Hurricanes and New Jersey Devils play. One day I will view their shimmering spires.

It also means that there was an actual incentive to win the divisions, keeping the regular season slightly more meaningful than it has been in the past. That being said, the real season begins here. Predictions and sour feelings about the author’s hometown St. Louis Blues after the jump.

Round 1 Predictions – Atlantic Division Continue reading

Organized Sports: Bro Canada, our Brome and Native Land

In the Bronze medal game, Finland had the better team...u.

In the Bronze medal game, Finland had the better team…u.

Organized Sports is a recurring sports column named for a seminal DC avant-hardcore song by the equally stupid and brilliant (to me, “equally stupid and brilliant” pretty much just means “brilliant”) band Void. Take from that what you will. 

Last week I predicted that the USA would take the Silver Medal, Sweden Gold, and Finland Bronze in the Men’s Olympic Hockey Tournament. The only one of these I got correct was Finland’s Bronze Medal win, so even Meat Loaf would be disappointed in me. One out of three is bad.

Continue reading

Organized Sports: Olympic Hockey at the Halfway Point

TJ Oshie and Jonathan Quick, because America.

TJ Oshie and Jonathan Quick, because America.

Organized Sports is a recurring sports column named for a seminal DC avant-hardcore song by the equally stupid and brilliant (to me, “equally stupid and brilliant” pretty much just means “brilliant”) band Void. Take from that what you will. 

As of yesterday, the Sochi Olympics Men’s Hockey Tournament reached its halfway point with the conclusion of the preliminary round of pool play. Thus far, we’ve already witnessed an instant classic game in the United States’ shootout win over Russia/coming out party for St. Louis Blues’ not-quite-star TJ Oshie, but there have been a couple of other really tight contests as well, including Canada’s final win in overtime over Team Finland and Russia’s second shootout, a winner against a resurgent Slovak team.

As great as these games may have been, though, they were not elimination games. The preliminary round eliminated no teams, only serving as seeding for the elimination tournament. The winner of each pool received a bye for the first round of the elimination tournament, leaving Sweden, Canada and the United States safe, along with Finland, the second place team with the best record and goal differential, until the quarterfinals.

Because I like to predict things in order to see how wrong I can be, let’s guess how the tournament will play out after the jump, shall we?

Continue reading

Organized Sports: It’s Time for Hockey Patriotism

David "Back-back-back-back-" Backes will be suiting up for the US Men's Hockey team.

David “Back-back-back-back-” Backes will be suiting up for the US Men’s Hockey team.

Organized Sports is a recurring sports column named for a seminal DC avant-hardcore song by the equally stupid and brilliant (to me, “equally stupid and brilliant” pretty much just means “brilliant”) band Void. Take from that what you will. 

I’m not typically a Rah-Rah-America type of guy. I feel fortunate to have been born in the United States, and understand the advantages I have as a result and am grateful for them, but it’s not that often that I feel like hopping on a giant bald eagle, grabbing a second-amendment protected assault rifle, and firing it into the sky as I wave the stars and stripes. Except, of course, when the Olympics come around.

Continue reading

Organized Sports: Moar Liek Pooper Bowl Amirite?

Not the best start.

Not the best start.

Never before have I seen a football game lost on the first play from scrimmage, but that was what happened with this year’s Super Bowl between the AFC Champion Denver Broncos and NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks. As Peyton Manning lined up behind center on Denver’s first play, he stepped up to adjust the play and center Manny Ramirez snapped the ball as if Manning were still in place in the shotgun formation, sailing the ball over his head and into the endzone, where Knowshawn Moreno landed on it for a safety. The Broncos were down 2-0 twelve seconds in the game, and had to kick the ball away, and even then, with more than 59 minutes of game time remaining, it already felt over.

The collapse didn’t end there, but that was perhaps the most ridiculous moment of ineptitude. The second half didn’t start off any better for the Broncos. Down 22-0 and kicking off, instead of having the strong-legged Matt Prater boot it into the endzone, he popped up a short kick, the team’s plan to stop wild card Percy Harvin from being able to return the kickoff. That did not work, as Harvin fielded the kick, passed within arm’s reach of five Denver special teamers, and waltzed into the endzone to put the Seahawks up 29-0. It didn’t get any better from there.

More on this game, and picks from the season, after the jump.

Continue reading